I’m Not Ashamed

“If we can share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.” 
~ Brené Brown

‘Oh, Nicole!’ That’s how the email started.

‘Darling friend, I’m so sorry to hear you are still battling Lyme disease. I hope you’re on the mend soon. Just wanted to give you some advice. What you write stays on the internet forever unless you decide to remove it, and even then it may be too late. So why on earth did you write about having incontinence? Nic, pull it down as soon as you can. That kind of stuff is so damaging for your image, and if you ever get a publishing deal you’ll regret this kind of over-sharing. Trust me.’

Hmmm….

Over-sharing? I don’t think so. Damaging? Some people will judge me, for sure. But they are not my people. You, dear readers, are my people.

Here’s what I know about my tribe, and about life in general.

Shit happens. Terrible, awful things can happen to good people for no reason. Life-changing accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. Wear and tear, illness and calamity can render the most sound of bodies and minds suddenly limpy, broken or cobbled together with tape, string, tears, stubbornness and fervent prayers. Many illnesses and incapacities are invisible. People live with all kinds of pains, traumas and problems that most people around them will never even guess at.

Right now I am suffering from neurological incontinence. Inflammation in my brain and nerves makes a signal go haywire and sends a message to my bladder instructing it to void. Which it does with no permission from me. One minute I have a full bladder, the next minute my bladder is emptying wherever I happen to be and no matter what I am wearing, doing or what my plans might be. It’s happened to me dozens of times over the years since I first began treatment for Lyme, and my solution is adult diapers. Which mostly work, and sometimes don’t.

People can suffer from neurological incontinence as a side effect of MS, advanced Lyme disease, brain or spinal cord injury, brain lesions, degenerative brain diseases, or the long term effects of radiation or cancer treatment, alcoholism or diabetes. It affects men and women, children through to people in old age. It affects me.

One day it may affect you or someone you love.

Few of us get a free pass through life with no adverse side-effects! My dear friend Carly-Jay and I often have a laugh over the bits of our bodies or bodily functions that fail us. We belong to a club of people who live well despite how our bodies sometimes misfunction or misbehave. We call that club the Unreliable Club and I’m sure some of you are already card-carrying members. (Maybe we need t-shirts!)

When I was first diagnosed with neurological incontinence (which comes and goes in me – I last had an attack a few years ago!) I looked everywhere for information and found almost none. It’s something no-one talks about.

So, I’m talking about it here. It’s not the end of the world. It can be managed. And it’s nothing to be ashamed of.

It’s just wee. Everyone does it. Every single day. It’s a normal part of life, and for some people it’s a part of life that doesn’t work well for any number of reasons. If more people talked openly about this kind of thing we’d realise just how prevalent these kinds of issues are AND THEY ARE NOTHING FOR WHICH YOU NEED EVER FEEL SHAME.

The Continence Foundation of Australia offers the following statistics:

  • Urinary incontinence affects up to 13% of Australian men and up to 37% of Australian women (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report, 2006).
  • 65% of women and 30% of men sitting in a GP waiting room report some type of urinary incontinence, yet only 31% of these people report having sought help from a health professional (Byles & Chiarelli, 2003: Help seeking for urinary incontinence: a survey of those attending GP waiting rooms, Australian and New Zealand Continence Journal).
  • 70% of people with urinary leakage do not seek advice and treatment for their problem (Millard, 1998: The prevalence of urinary incontinence in Australia, Australian and New Zealand Continence Journal).
  • An Australian study found that over a three month period, 50% of women aged 45-59 years of age experienced some degree of mild, moderate or severe urinary incontinence (Millard, 1998: The prevalence of urinary incontinence in Australia, Australian and New Zealand Continence Journal). 
  • The prevalence of urge incontinence, which is strongly associated with prostate disease, is fairly low in younger males and increases to 30% for those aged 70-84 and 50% for those 85 years and over (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report, 2006).

It’s wee. It’s not working in a very controlled manner in me just now. That’s okay. I have bigger stuff to think about. This is just small stuff, not worth sweating over.

If you feel the need to unfollow me, unfriend me or avoid me because of my bladder control issues and embarrassing habit of oversharing then go right ahead. I’ll still be here for you when life gets bumpy. And then I’ll remind you that you can still live the dream while rocking adult diapers and I won’t love you any less for it. Instead, I’ll be cheering you on!

Much love, Nicole xx

Why Being ‘Nice’ Can Be Poisonous To Your Soul


“Share your weaknesses. Share your hard moments. Share your real side. It’ll either scare away every fake person in your life or it will inspire them to finally let go of that mirage called “perfection,” which will open the doors to the most important relationships you’ll ever be a part of.” 
~ Dan Pearce

Lovelies, today I want to share my perspective on ‘making nice’ with you.

Kindness is a loving balm, understanding is a mental tonic, compassion grows our hearts, love is food for the soul, but niceness? Far too often niceness is a poison administered to ourselves by our own hand.

There is a trend (and I recognise it because I once was in that same place!) where people beginning to become spiritually aware try to live from a place of unconditional love. That’s a beautiful thing, but too often what gets practised is not actually unconditional love but ‘niceness’.

Many people consider niceness to be a virtue; a sign of living from heart, and acting from love. I’m not referring to kindness, or good manners, or amiability. I’m talking here about pleasing others, not wanting to hurt someone’s feelings, and being agreeable and amenable, even if it comes at a high cost to yourself.

Speaking our truth honours us, and it teaches us honest and direct communication that honours and respects others. Can we come from a place of unconditional love and still speak our truth? Absolutely! Because the premise of unconditional love is that we also love ourselves.

Authenticity requires us to live with honesty – not with silencing ourselves or suppressing our true thoughts and emotions.

Niceness is not about unconditional love – it is about giving up honesty in order to avoid disapproval, confrontation, rejection, ridicule or embarrassment. It elevates the happiness and well-being of others above your own. It is based on falseness, and by its nature, niceness prevents honesty and authenticity. When you come from niceness you teach others to devalue you, and disrespect you. You do not set clear boundaries.

Niceness does not come from a heart-centred life. It grows out of fear and a lack of self-worth. It is a behaviour that goes counter to our intuitive wisdom, and to those gut-based mechanisms that keep us safe.  We tell people what they want to hear, we do and say things to keep others happy or to keep the peace. We act in a way that pleases others but that robs us of a little (or a big bit!) of ourselves.

There is always a way to tell the difference between being nice and being kind.  Kindness comes from a place of being centred, and it empowers us.  It strengthens us, as it strengthens others. We can act with generosity or compassion and there is no cost to us, or it is a cost we willingly bear.  We give without expecting anything in return, for the sake of uplifting others.

Niceness always leaves you with an aftertaste – you know you have’t spoken truthfully; you feel that twang of inauthentic energy, that twinge of discomfort, or you even get that sense of being taken for granted or taken for a ride.

Niceness diminishes us, even when it strengthens others. We bite our tongue in order to say the flattering thing, we do the act with a little flame of resentment in our heart. And sometimes it starts out as kindness – but our kindness becomes expected, or disrepected – we are taken advantage of but we are unable to speak up about that and voice our own feelings. So we act nice instead.

When we choose niceness it poisons us.  It leads to depression, anxiety, shame, emotional distress, guilt, anger and despair.   Life-long patterns of niceness leave us open to exploitation and invite difficult, damaging and dangerous relationships into our lives.

We end up doing things we don’t want to do – we can become an entirely different person to who we are on the inside. We can lose ourselves so completely that we have no idea any more what makes us happy, what our preferences are, what we want in life…

Taken to extremes, through living a life of niceness we can cease to exist. Instead, we become a support role in someone else’s life. We become Cinderella, at home scrubbing the floors while her stepsisters are out having fun!

Are you too nice?

Maybe it’s time to start honouring your own truth. Love starts with the self, and healthy self-esteem can only be built by standing up for yourself, giving your feelings a voice, and attending to your own needs.  You can do that and still be polite.  You can do that and still be kind.  You can do that and still be likeable, lovable and accepted.  Don’t keep drinking that from that poisonous niceness bottle!

And if your acts of self-respect and kindness aren’t taken well by others? Maybe it’s time to  get some space, maybe it’s time to stop giving, maybe it’s time to move on… If you have to be ‘nice’ in order for your life to work, the price will always be too high.

You might be surprised. As you begin voicing your honest thoughts, you give others permission to do the same. Being authentic can create great change. It invites miracles. And this week supports that kind of energy, so be brave and embrace your truth then live from that space and watch the magic begin to happen in your life. Choose love. Choose kindness. And above all, be true to yourself. It’s worth it! 

Much love, Nicole ❤ xx

Image from www.simplereminders.com

The Joy Of Old Friends


“Make new friends, but don’t forget the old. One is silver, the other is gold. ” ~ Joyce Cody (My Nana, from my Autograph book, 1976)

I’ve had a dear friend staying at the farm these past days. She’s someone I’ve known since school. Someone who knew me before Ben, before my first serious boyfriends, before the openly psychic stuff, before illness, before so many of the big events of my life. When we met we were still children and we were both young, idealistic and clever. We made big plans for our lives and we expected that nothing would stop us. Any barriers? We’d just work through or bust through them. We were eighties women – it was what we did.

Who would have thought, all those years ago, as we stayed at each other’s houses and grew to know each other’s families, that one day we would still be friends and that the lives we thought we would have for ourselves would look so very different to how they have turned out?

Who would have expected there to be so much suffering between then and now? So much pain? So much strong outer appearance accompanied by inner upheaval and doubt? So much joy? So much unexpected wisdom and grace? So much music and books and laughter and travel? So much growth? So much love?

And seriously, who would EVER have thought that 1980s high-waisted jeans, undercuts, plaid and shoulder pads would be back in style?

When my Nana wrote that quote in my Autograph Book (remember those!) all those years ago I thought it was a bit dumb – as you would at age nine. But at fifty I finally get it. Nana was right after all. New friends are silver, old friends are gold.

To share memories, common history and a deeper sense of knowing about each other is a rare, powerful and special gift. But don’t worry if you don’t have someone like that in your life right now. True friends may not always walk in step with you. Your life paths may draw you away from each other and then back together again over the course of your life.

The rest of 2019 is wonderful for all kinds of reconnection, so if you’ve been thinking about someone from your past, or a loved one with whom you lost touch don’t be afraid to instigate contact. At worst nothing will happen, or you’ll find you grew apart. That’s okay. You will have lost nothing by trying. But somewhere you may find gold, and that gold will be precious and wonderful for you both.

Hugs and love, Nicole ❤ xx

Holiday At the Farm!


“There is more to life than making a living. Do not work more than you live.” ~ Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Hello, Lovelies!

Right now we have a friend and her little girls vacationing with us here at the farm. Each day the girls have farm chores to do – watering the gardens and fruit trees (it is very dry here right now), feeding the goldfish in the big ceramic pot that sits by the front door, and feeding some hay to the cows and all the new little calves. It’s a late calving season this year, and we’ve had three new calves in the past week and another few will probably arrive soon too!

Amidst all the farm work there has also been time for breakfasts at our favourite Byron Bay cafe, swims in the pool, outings to the bookshop, cooking lessons in my little farmhouse kitchen, time for reading and for colouring in our January Mandalas.

I’ve still been working, sneaking off into my office to write blogs, work on our retreats and courses and to do readings for clients. But work has that relaxed holiday feel to it, and it has been a pleasure to sit down at my desk every day to write and craft our projects for the year ahead.

Yesterday was particularly exciting. We decided that dinner would be a cocktail party on the verandah. No special reason – just because we could.

It was compulsory to wear a flower in our hair, and we all put on some party clothes. Ben chose a great selection of music, and then we sat outside and snacked and talked and laughed the night away. We also had a great box of cards that we took turns choosing, that prompted us to share something we were proud of, grateful for, favourite songs, achievements. That part was probably the highlight of my day!

I made non-alcoholic mango cocktails for the girls, and we adults shared glasses of Prosecco with preserved hibiscus flowers in the bottom of each glass for a fancy party effect.

Our food included fresh local oysters and prawns (shrimp), and a selection of cheeses and dips, crackers, olives, cold meats, fruits and snacks. Delicious. And of course a few morsels seemed to slip off those platters and into our dogs’ tummies. Although I can’t see how that happened!

What can be better in life than creating new shared memories with friends?

Today? More Planner time for me, a little writing time and cooking lessons: foundation biscuit mixture and variations, and later we’ll make tacos for dinner.

I’m wishing you a year of balance, connection, fun and meaningful work too.

Much love, Nicole ❤ xx

A Snack Platter Dinner Is A Legitimate Thing!


“I believe in a benevolent God not because He created the Grand Canyon or Michelangelo, but because He gave us snacks.” 
~
 Paul Rudnick

Our neighbours came over for dinner last night.

We get together quite often, and many times our dinner is not a proper meal. Instead it is a dinner of snacks.

Our friends will bring some. I will rustle some up. Fresh harvest from the vege garden – maybe some little tomatoes, green beans or a nice crunchy capsicum (bell pepper), crackers and dips and cheeses and relish and nuts. Maybe some leftover salad or roast meat or vegetables. Whatever else we can find that is snacky.

Then we add wine, or bubbles, or tea. Throw in some good conversation and a few laughs. Music, of course.

Perhaps something sweet to finish. Fresh fruit or whatever biscuits, cake or chocolate is hiding in the pantry.

Maybe, after a while, some kind of game. Cards Against Humanity is a favourite.

Quite often I’ll make us all a Golden Milk latte or a mug of chai to round out the night.

It’s an easy thing to do, to throw together an assortment of snacks. It’s low key, and if you’re tired or unwell it makes having company a pleasure rather than a chore, which is as it should be!

The energies of 2019 suit relaxed get-togethers and shared company. Maybe you could try a snacks platter night some time soon, and ask all your guests to contribute.

Hugs and love, Nicole❤ xx

Nicole Cody’s Christmas Gift Oracle ~ For You With Love!


“Your personal truth is your gift to the world.” 
~ Jennifer Elisabeth

Hello Lovelies,

So here we are – another Christmas is upon us.

It’s a joyful time for some, and a trying time for others, and I wanted to acknowledge that, and to remind you that there is always a place here at my table for you. I’m sending you love this Christmas, and remembering you in my thoughts, prayers and meditations.

Now, come sit down with me. Let me pour you a cup of tea while I tell you how glad I am to have you in my life. I’m so grateful to have you as part of our community as we share this journey of life together. Thank you!

Once again I have created an oracle for you. The very first one I ever posted was The Healing Power of Flowers and Fairy Blessings.  We offered a selection of flowers for you to choose from, and each flower came with a message – a mini-reading if you will. It was so well received that I’ve been creating oracles for you ever since.

Today I’m so pleased to offer you another of my Magical Oracles! This time, I’d like you to choose the Christmas Gift that appeals to you the most. Then take your time to unwrap it and receive its message and blessings for you.

Instructions for using today’s post

Scroll down through the following Christmas Gift images and then let yourself come back to the one you are most drawn to.

When you have chosen your gift, scroll further down for your oracle message. Trust that what you most need to know is exactly what you shall choose.

Wherever you are, and whatever your faith and beliefs, I wish you peace today and the days ahead, and joy in your heart. Know that you are loved. Know that you matter to me. I intend only the best for you, and that 2019 be a year that is richly satisfying and filled with love and kindness.

Love and Light, Nicole ❤ xx

Let the Christmas Blessings Begin…

1. ♥ Silver Deer

2. Golden Stars

3. Orbs of Light

4. Natural Beauty

5. Happy Santa

6. Trolley of Wonders

7. Sparkly Gifts

8. Simply Wonderful

♥ Your Gift’s Message ♥

Each Christmas Gift has a message for you for 2019. I have also selected a crystal to best support the message and energies of your chosen gift.  You could wear or hold this crystal, pop it in your pocket, under your pillow or beside your bed. The Power Word is a word to remind yourself of the quality you most need and that you are strongly attracting right now.  You can turn it into your own personal mantra by saying “I choose ___________ ” (insert your Power Word). Your Magical Healing Environment is a place or activity you’ll find supportive and healing.

1.Silver Deer – Emerging Into Light  You’re coming into a time of great change and shift, and all of it for your own best outcomes and results. All of those ideas and dreams need to be given light and space so that they can grow into something tangible in 2019. It’s time for you to shine! It’s a wonderful year ahead. Be brave and keep going. Don’t be afraid to make BIG changes. It’s your year for that. And all of this change will lead to a whole new way of being in the world. ♥ Best Crystal – Ametrine (or an Amethyst and a Citrine)  ♥ Power Word – Transformation ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Quiet time in nature or spaces that nurture and inspire you.  Nature walks, ocean swims, watching the snow or rain fall as you sit inside drinking a warm drink with your journal by your side, being in an art gallery or favourite cafe, a museum or a beautiful garden. Let yourself have time for the inspiration inside you to rise up and be heard.

2. Golden Stars – Healing Blessings The Golden Stars Gift heralds major lasting healing and improvements in your physical and emotional well-being in 2019. You’ll be able to tune in to the wisdom of your body, and will naturally begin to prefer the foods, exercise and other support that best suit your individual needs. You’ll feel a resurgence in energy and mental clarity over the months ahead. You’ll become stronger and increasingly comfortable in your own skin. This newfound health will become the foundation for so many other breakthroughs and advances in your life. ♥ Best Crystal  – CARNELIAN  ♥ Power Word – TRANSFORMATION ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Fresh Air to fill your lungs, to energise you with the sun and healing vibrations of the natural environment, and to get blood pumping through your body as you move around. Resting and meditating in nature is fabulous for you too!

3. Orbs of Light – Bountiful Blessings You are coming into a time of deeper connection, deeper knowing, and deeper intuition. It’s a powerful year ahead for you – one of mystical events and blessings that make every corner of your life feel touched by magic. As you open to your intuitive gifts give yourself some breathing space to contemplate the bigger questions in your life. Make time for reading, meditation and journalling. Expect a bigger connection to God, your Guides and Angels and your own Wise Self. Expect answers to those big questions, and a clarity about your way forward. All is well.  ♥ Best Crystal – LABRADORITE  ♥ Power Word – BECOME  ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Sacred Spaces or alone time. Churches and temples, parks, sitting under old trees, your meditation corner, a library or a quiet corner of the house when no-one else is home.

4. Natural Beauty – Wisdom Blessings This year is fabulous for all forms of learning and study, and for self-development. A year to deepen wisdom, and to expand your mind. A year to master skills. A year for philosophy and deep thinking. A year to truly understand who you are and why you are here. A year that shows you where your life is headed. A year where you will find a deep sense of connection to a path forward or a way to be of service in using your talents and gifts. A year of finding your calling ♥ Best Crystal – LAPIS LAZULI ♥ Power Word – WISDOM  ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Time for thinking, studying and learning.  Libraries, online courses, universities and schools, mastermind groups, workshops and conferences will work well for you this year. Setting up a study or writing space at home will be useful. Find time for long walks in nature, and for meditation too.

5. Happy Santa – Reconnection and Love 2019 brings you back into the flow of life again after too much time on your own. A time to slow down and simplify, a time to connect or reconnect with friends and family, and to make new relationships. A social year, that is enjoyable and meaningful. This is a year all about relationships, connection and enjoyment of everyday life. A nourishing and enjoyable year that sees you develop or deepen relationships that will last the rest of your life. ♥ Best Crystal – RUBY IN ZOISITE ♥ Power Word – HEARTSPACE ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Anywhere you can spend time with people you love and doing things you love.  Coffee with friends, weekend picnics, holidays away, date nights, dinner parties, making music, making art, making love, family time, reunions, travel and socialising – all of these are good for you this year.

6. Trolley of Wonders – Inspiration and Blessed Creation This is a powerful year of creative practice and self-expression for you. This could be renovating your home, writing a book, starting art classes, or putting the things you have made out into the world for others to buy or appreciate. It’s a year for working from your heart, and pouring your heart and soul into everything you do. A year to blossom your creative and life direction, and to deepen your appreciation of your unique individuality and gifts.  Best Crystal – SUNSTONE   Power Word –CREATIVITY ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Your studio, office, workspace or project area. This year you need a combination of inspiration and dedication. Be inspired by other artists or innovators. Take classes. Learn and then stretch yourself in the application of that learning. Spend time creating/making/designing and working on creative projects too. Dedicate yourself to your art or projects. Make them a priority in 2019 and watch how your life changes!

7. Sparkly GiftsLevelling Up In Love and Life!  Life is too short to settle for second best. In your job, in your relationships, in your living environment. In 2019 it’s time to let your life level up. Don’t stay in situations or relationships where you are not happy and fulfilled. Don’t stay friends with people (or family!) who put you down or treat you badly. Value yourself!  If you’re in a relationship talk together about your future and where your life is headed so you can move towards those dreams together. Get help if your relationship is in trouble – whether that is counselling to stay together or to exit the relationship. Be discerning about your life and reward yourself with things that matter deeply to you.  For those of you seeking love, set your sights high and know that this is the year you can make your romantic dreams come true. ♥ Best Crystal – TIGER EYE ♥ Power Word – ABUNDANCE  ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Change.  Change can be a force for good. Plan out your future, a future that you’ll love. Spend time thinking about what positive changes you can make in your life and know that the Universe is supporting you to do so.

8. Simply Wonderful – Sanctuary Blessings What’s needed for you to have a great year in 2019 is a sense of sanctuary – a place where you can feel safe, protected and nurtured. A place where you can be yourself and express yourself. It might be your bedroom, your study, your altar, your backyard. It might be your writing space or your office. It might be your entire home. It needs to be clean. It needs to be comfortable. It needs to make your heart feel glad. It needs to be a space that reflects who you are and what you love. Move if you have to. And if the mess is inside you, get help with that. Do whatever it takes to bring yourself back to a place of inner peace and calm. From that place of sanctuary you’ll see miracles unfold for you in the year ahead. ♥ Best Crystal – SNOWFLAKE OBSIDIAN  ♥ Power Word – SANCTUARY ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Home (whatever that means to you).  Create a space that allows you to feel safe, comfortable, supported and surrounded by beauty and meaning. Start with one small corner. Simple is fine. De-clutter. Make space for rest and new growth.

Teacup Oracle – For Life Guidance

 

Who would then deny that when I am sipping tea in my tearoom I am swallowing the whole universe with it and that this very moment of my lifting the bowl to my lips is eternity itself transcending time and space?
~ D.T. Suzuki

 

Will you join me for a cup of tea and a little magic?

Every so often I like to create an oracle for you. The very first one I ever posted was The Healing Power of Flowers and Fairy Blessings.  We offered a selection of flowers for you to choose from, and each flower came with a message – a mini-reading if you will. It was so well received that I’ve been creating oracles for you ever since.

Today I’m so pleased to offer you another of my Magical Oracles! This time, I’m offering a cup of tea to provide you with the wisdom, guidance and support you might need right now.

Instructions for using today’s post

Scroll down through the following teacup images and then let yourself come back to the one you are most drawn to.

When you have chosen your teacup, scroll further down for your oracle message. Trust that what you most need to know is exactly what you shall choose.

Love and Light,

Nicole ♥ xx

Let the Teacup Blessings Begin…

1.  Violets Teacup

2.  Blossoms and Birds Teacup

3.  Everything Golden Teacup

4. Very Deco Teacup

5. Wonderland Teacups

6. Skull and Roses Teacup

7. Italian Lace Teacup

8.  Peacock Teacup

♥ Your Teacup’s Message ♥

Each magical teacup has a message for you. I have also selected a crystal to best support the message and energies of your teacup.  You could wear or hold this crystal, pop it in your pocket, under your pillow or beside your bed. (If you’d like to know more about working with crystals click here) The Power Word is a word to remind yourself of the quality you most need and that you are strongly attracting right now.  You can turn it into your own personal mantra by saying “I choose ___________ ” (insert your Power Word). Your Magical Healing Environment is a place or activity you’ll find supportive and healing.

1. Violets Teacup You’re being so strongly supported by loved ones who’ve crossed over, and by your Guides and the Angelic Realms. Call on them for help and guidance, and know that you are deeply loved, even as you feel so alone. They have a message for you to let you know that everything, ultimately will be okay, and they are sending you strength, grace and love.  Best Crystal – AMETHYST   Power Word – SUPPORT  Magical Healing Environment – Quiet time on your own to fill yourself up with nurture, to give yourself time to think and plan, and to learn from all of these lessons in your life.  It’s breakthrough time. You’re almost there!

2.  Blossoms and Birds Teacup It’s a time of accelerated progress right now, and a wonderful time for both expanding and sharing your knowledge. Trust your abilities, and take small consistent steps towards your goals. Keep company with others from your tribe, and if you have no tribe, seek out like-minded people who can support you, believe in you and help you grow.  Best Crystal – LABRADORITE  ♥ Power Word – KNOWLEDGE ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Places that allow you to develop your craft, your wisdom and your skill. This could be courses, seminars and conferences, books, teachers and mentors, journalling, dreaming and goal setting, or a room or studio where you work on your projects or study. It can also be you stepping up to be the mentor and teacher, and you putting your gifts out into the world. Embrace possibility!

3.  Everything Golden Teacup  A time of turning corners, of new beginnings, fresh starts and remaking yourself and your life. You are being encouraged to actively create the life of your dreams. It’s your life, and you are worthy of every good thing, so step up and claim it. Situations are easing, there is support at ever turn, and you’re moving back into flow and abundance.  Best Crystal – CITRINE   Power Word – RENEWAL ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Anywhere that supports your growing sense of self-worth. Look to positive friendships and relationships that make you feel good about yourself, to clothes and hair that allow you to reclaim your confidence, to trusted advisors and teachers who can support you in making all of these much-needed changes. Take yourself on outings to places and events that inspire and uplift you. Dream yourself a new life, starting today!

4. Very Deco Teacup  This is a time on your life where you can finally begin to see, with great clarity, both the truth of your current situation, and the best way forward. A time of inspiration, vision and sound decision-making. A time of great personal power, and of establishing sovereignty in your own life – a place from which all good things will flow.  Best Crystal – CLEAR QUARTZ   Power Word – CLARITY  Magical Healing Environment – Time for planning your life, creating a vision board, or writing in your journal. This is a fabulous time for you to truly work out how you feel, and what actions and decisions need to be made to make your life more authentic and fulfilling. You’ll surprise yourself with how easily you step into your own power now!

5.  Wonderland Teacups Friendship and helpful people is the theme of this delightful teacup. What you need most right now is good company – the company of a friend or lover, of family or your favourite pets, of new friends and old. Of like-minded people who can share your journey. And it’s also letting you know that so many of the things you enjoyed in childhood are still available to support you now, and to enrich your life.  Best Crystal – ROSE QUARTZ  ♥ Power Word – FRIENDS  Magical Healing Environment – Time spent connecting with friends Catch up with old friends you haven’t seen for the longest time. Have a cup of tea with the neighbour across the way. Organise coffee, a quick meal, a picnic or an outing. Join a group. Let your heart spend time on friendship, laughter, shared problems and shared joy. Love, laugh, live!

6. Skull and Roses Teacup  The message of this teacup is self-expression and self-care. Your soul is longing to be heard – it yearns for individuality, for attention to detail, for beauty and for art. You could find these qualities in nature, in architecture, in cultural pursuits or in your own creative expression.  Best Crystal – FLUORITE   Power Word – INDIVIDUALITY  Magical Healing Environment – Time that allows you to express or experience things that define you as an individual   Dress in ways that help you identify with your soul energy. Choose eclectic, individual, vintage, recycled and bespoke over mass-produced. Nourish yourself with culture and beauty. Spend time in beautiful, artsy or quirky environments. Embrace your uniqueness and be your best self!

7.  Italian Lace Teacup You’re stepping into a delicious time of creative energy. Expect ideas, insights and innovation. Challenge yourself and the status quo. Travel and open yourself to new ideas and the joy of thinking outside the square. This is a magical time for you, and you’ll be strongly guided and supported in this space of creative flow. Plan adventures, and then go! Start something new. Get things finished – there are also powerful energies for completion here.  Best Crystal – GARNET  Power Word – INSPIRED  ♥ Magical Healing Environment – People and places that stimulate you  Travel, go to new places, even if it is just a coffee shop or restaurant. Plan holidays and major life changes. Embark on new projects. Make things. End things or finish things. Think bold thoughts. Believe in yourself and in magic!

8.  PeacockTeacup This is a powerful time for healing for you right now. A time to get your body, mind and spirit back in balance. A time of drawing inwards for a while, in order to emerge renewed, healed, empowered and reinvigorated. Focus on your health and well-being. Pull back from stressful people and situations. Put your own well-being front and centre right now. It’s time for healing breakthroughs.  Best Crystal –CHRYSOCOLLA   Power Word – HEAL ♥ Magical Healing Environment – Any place or person that nurtures your health  Give energy to your best healthy diet, stretch, spend time in nature, get that body moving, breathe deeply, get some sunlight on your skin, plenty of rest and consult practitioners who can support you on this journey back to wellness. You’re being supported to find healing breakthroughs!

Things to be thankful for…

“Take time daily to reflect on how much you have. It may not be all that you want but remember someone somewhere is dreaming to have what you have.” ~Germany Kent

This morning I’m counting my Blessings. Such a simple thing to do, and it always makes me feel richer. I like to count them off on my fingers – a tangible act, and a way of really anchoring their truth in my life. Blessings to me are always the simple things in life, and often the things we take for granted.  Even on the worst of days we can find something to be grateful for.  Counting blessings gets my attention OFF the things I don’t want, and back on the things I do. It’s an instant mood lifter that keeps things in perspective for me. It never takes much to find something that’s a blessing.

Today I am grateful for:

1. The sound of wind in the trees as I go to sleep, and birdsong as I wake up.

2. The warmth of the fire, and the sweet smell of woodsmoke in the cold morning air. (I’m also grateful for my husband, who chops the wood and loads the wheelbarrow, and stokes the fire for me!)

3. Chai tea, enough for two, sipped from big bowls, with just a dusting of cinnamon.

4. My Meyer Lemon tree, and its abundance of luscious fruit. And the fresh Lemon Curd I can spread on my morning toast!

5. Farmers’ Markets, and the dedication of our local growers to grow or make the best seasonal fresh produce.

6. My Kindle, and being able to snuggle under the doona on a lazy morning, sipping chai and reading books.

7. My dogs, Rufous and Harry, for their love and companionship.

8. Writing. It is my greatest love, and the thing that wakes me up in the middle of the night, brimful of ideas.

9. Red Jasper which grounds and nurtures, and feels wonderful to have tucked up within my aura.

10. Trees. My little farmhouse is cradled by hundred-year-old trees who whisper their secrets, one to another, and add an incredible energy to this place and to me.

How about you? What do you have to be thankful for today? Go on – count them off on your fingers!

Wishing you many Blessings, Nicole  xx

Celebrating Life, Lungs and Second Chances!

“If you’re reading this…
Congratulations, you’re alive.
If that’s not something to smile about,
then I don’t know what is.” 
Chad Sugg

A little while ago I received an invitation in my email. It’s for a party this weekend to celebrate something extraordinary. Yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of my dear friend Carly-Jay Metcalfe‘s double lung transplant. Carly has Cystic Fibrosis. At the time of her transplant things were dire and she’d been given just a week to live. Suddenly she was gifted life again through organ donation.

So this weekend we’re celebrating her Transplanniversary with a quiet little gig for family and friends. Of course we will all be thinking about Carly’s donor and her family too, because while we are celebrating Carly’s life we are all aware that one family lost their loved one and donated organs which enabled our gorgeous girl to be saved.

Carly-Jay, or Carls as we call her in our household (Aunty Carls to our dogs – she is Godmother to Rufous!) is one of my dearest friends for so many reasons. She loves books and writing and good coffee and mugs of tea as much as I do. She has a wicked sense of humour and one of the biggest hearts I know. And she and I are both in the second-chance-at-life club and the socially unreliable club. Illness often means we break dates with one another. It’s just how it is.

That’s me on the left: almost blind, drug-bloated and rocking an eye patch and dark glasses after I lost 70% of my vision in one eye and 90% in the other as a result of life-saving medications for an acute hospital-acquired superbug bladder infection – the same infection that recurred and nearly killed me last year. Carly insisted on taking me out for breakfast AND cut up my food for me, put my coffee cup in my hand and was my human seeing-eye-dog. We were practising me being blind because it was predicted I would stay that way. Carls kept me entertained with rollicking descriptions of everyone around us and hardly bumped me into any furniture at all. What a treasure she is! (And yes, I eventually got most of my vision back, luckily!)

Carly having blood taken from her foot, because we both belong to the crappy over-used veins club!

Carls and I live with chronic and progressive degenerative illnesses (hers is Cystic Fibrosis and mine is Late Stage Lyme Disease with Lyme Carditis). We share the same kind of normal – living with often unseen aspects of disability (not that we think of ourselves as disabled – more ‘unabled’ when poor health puts limits on us) that impact us and our families. Modern and alternative medicine keep us alive, upright and functioning, but sh*t still keeps going pear-shaped for us, and our health is a very up-and-down road. Carls isn’t just a friend. She has been my live-in nurse and helper on more than one occasion after I have come home from hospital, or have struggled with treatment for one thing or another. I’ve been her cheer squad when it’s all been a bit horrendous for her too.

It’s good to have someone to talk to who gets what I am going through, and who can share a laugh with me over such awesome topics as incontinence, fatigue and crappy veins. That’s what friends are for, right?

I’m so looking forward to Carly’s party on the weekend. (I have a few catering surprises for her too, in honour of another friend we lost suddenly to illness some years ago, but stay tuned for those as they need to stay secret for now!) One of the most powerful things Carly’s taught me is to rock your scars and own your wounds, and both of us subscribe to the philosophy of celebrating the everyday, and laughing, no matter how bad things get. So we’ll be doing lots of laughing and celebrating come Saturday. With snacks. And loved ones. She’s still here. I’m still here. That’s worth celebrating!

Life is beautiful, and every breath is a gift. For all of us.
Sending all my love to you, Nicole   xx

PS: Just a little reminder. When you die you won’t need your organs anymore, but someone else might. Please consider becoming an organ donor and have that chat with your family and friends.

My beautiful friend, Carly!

The Importance Of A Shared Table

 “If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with him – the people who give you their food give you their heart.” 

~ Cesar Chavez

 

One of the things I am most interested in for myself, and for you, is this: what do we need to do to nourish our souls and feel more connected to our lives, our loved ones, our bodies, our communities, our planet?

An interesting answer to this question has been coming up time and again in my channelling sessions, and it wasn’t what I was expecting. It’s this: one of the most fundamental acts of connection and nourishment is the pleasure of a shared meal.

It doesn’t matter whether that meal is tea and toast or a feast, whether it is served at your own table or at a local cafe or a fancy restaurant. What matters is that time-honoured human ritual of sharing food and conversation, of being in each other’s presence, of making time to truly be present with the meal and with the company. It’s how we have always done things. It’s encoded in our DNA.

So, can you find time to share a table with someone soon? Can you put the screens away and just focus on being present with each other and with the food in front of you?

I’m doing just that this week in Adelaide, and it has been so good for my soul. I’ve also loved seeing other people out and about, catching up over food or a coffee, laughing and sharing and caring.

Wishing you a spot at my virtual table, where we all can share food, love and laughs across the miles, and sending much love your way, Nicole ❤ xx